Tuesday, December 8, 2009
Amelia Curran -- Hunter, Hunter
I discovered Amelia Curran in 2008 when Six Shooter picked up War Brides, the Newfoundland singer-songwriter’s fourth album for national distribution. Picking it for my Montreal Gazette Top 10 list that year, I wrote, “This quietly stunning album heralds the arrival of Amelia Curran as one of this country's finest singer-songwriters.”
Hunter, Hunter, recorded in St. John’s, reinforces the impressions I voiced on hearing War Brides. Her songs are poetic and compelling. Many are also impressionistic, leaving them open to interpretation in the same way that Bob Dylan, Leonard Cohen and Joni Mitchell songs often do. “Bye Bye Montreal” is a good example. Is Curran bidding farewell to a friend or lover in Montreal, or to the city itself? Is it a permanent goodbye, or something temporary?
Among my favourite songs are the intense “Tiny Glass Houses,” a metaphorical look into wounded, open souls; “The Dozens,” a clever, bit of female braggadocio with elements of blues, cabaret and New Orleans second-line in the arrangement; and, best of all, “Last Call,” a late-night, barroom waltz that says farewell to a partner she never loved, or perhaps, to a barroom life she’s ready to leave behind.
Amelia Curran is an artist that I expect we'll be hearing from for many years to come.